“Lord I crawled across the barrenness to you with my empty cup uncertain in asking any small drop of refreshment. If only I had known you better I’d have come running with a bucket.” -Nancy Spiegelberg
There can be no freedom from condemnation without submission to the saving life of Christ. This is a definite and critical point.
Without a faith in Him, we are left with the option of carrying our own guilt. This is a staggering possibility, and our lives turn to drinking and drugging. We must escape from all this pain and sin. We are walking out condemnation, and the weight of this is immense.
Much of our life can be distilled from this viciousness. We absorb it, adapt to it, thinking it will ease up some. But it doesn’t, and it won’t. We turn to all kinds of ‘pain absorbers’ looking to cope with this pain. There are escapes, and we try them all. But ultimately we end up with one that is quite imperfect, and we ‘sort of’ become a little numb.
Condemnation twists us and who are in Christ. It deforms our spirit and destroys our confidence before our Father in Heaven. His love is still being poured out, but we have placed a cover on our vessel. We are blocking His mercy by our unwillingness to be forgiven. All of our guilt seems a reasonable reaction to the heaviness of our sin.
Humans were not designed to handle guilt, and its cousin fear. When we do try, we short-circuit. Pain is always avoided, and that ends up corralling us into bondage. From here, we can still mentally assent to the Bible; we can still have a sense of spirituality. But it will always be filtered through our sense of condemnation.
Faith in the complete action of Jesus is enough. Because I believe He carried the full weight of my sin, past—-present—future, I can walk out a free man. Yes, sin does require justice, it is to be condemned. But my faith, trust or confidence enables me to separate from the sin that would take me, straight to the bottom.
In this release, we are supposed to live. Freed from every condemnation. You must displace condemnation with grace.
We have the joy of the forgiven sinner, and that really makes no sense at all.
It isn’t at all rational. But it is legal, and it is binding. And permanent. There have been too many lies, for too long. Grace is meant to be the most radical concept we have ever confronted. And truly it is.
“Man is born broken. He lives by mending. The grace of God is the glue.” -Eugene Gladstone O’Neill